When Should I replace my Tires? This is a great question and literally your life is riding on this question. Knowing How Long Tire Last is very important. There are 3 reasons to replace your tires, Tread Depth, Uneven Wear, and Age.
First let’s look at tread depth. All Tires in the US have a wear bar in the tread that will tell you the life is up. Approx 2/32- 3/32 is a general rule. A penny placed in the tread with Lincolns head upside down is an easy test. If you can see the top of his head, you need tires! (see pic)The purpose of the tread is to keep your tire in contact with wet roads. The less tread you have the more likely your Car is to hydroplane.
Tires and suspension
Uneven wear may or may not mean you need tires, but it does mean you need your Suspension and Alignment checked. Any steel or cord showing is an indicator of worn Ball Joints, Tie Rods, or other Front End part need to be repaired. Also Tire need to be replaced right away. Any bumps or unevenness needs to be checked by a qualified Automotive Center to insure your safety.
Age is the one most do not think about. Manufacturers differ some between 5-10 years as the life span of a tire. I feel 6 years is a good rule. In Texas it is Hot and Tires deal with harsh conditions that shorten the life of rubber. This is more common on Trailer Tires and Cars or Trucks of the elderly who do not drive as many miles as the average person. There is a DOT build date code on every Tire. It is free to get checked at any Mechanic or Tire Shop, but in the internet world you can DIY it with Google and Youtube.
So let’s Recap Checking your Tires tread depth and wear patterns as well as keeping up with the age of your tires will keep you safer and help you determine When to Replace Your Tires!